The Queensland Institute for Medical Research (QIMR) announced today that over 1300 riders are participating in the inaugural annual Rio Tinto Ride to Conquer Cancer having raised $4.7 million for cancer research.
With one in two Australians developing cancer in their lifetime, the Rio Tinto Ride to Conquer Cancer has become a powerful call to action for cancer patients, survivors and their supporters. Funds raised from the two-day cycling event will support a wide range of cancer research projects at QIMR – one of Australia’s largest and most successful medical research institutes.
According to QIMR’s Director Professor Frank Gannon, “People from all works of life have come today in support of QIMR’s research. Everyday Australians, including cancer survivors, researchers, business leaders and corporate teams have united in a common goal – to conquer cancer.
“It is a true recognition of the importance of our work to the community and the tremendous support inspires us as we face the everyday challenges of medical research.
“Funds raised will be used further strengthen QIMR’s cancer research program. It will be used to support projects that will improve our understanding of this devastating disease and bring us closer to finding cures.
“We have been overwhelmed by the amazing support from the community and want to thank everyone who has been involved – the riders and their supporters, the volunteers who have made the event possible and the thousands of people who have donated generously.”
Following the opening ceremony at The University of Queensland (UQ), St Lucia Campus, Mills Road, Brisbane at 6:00 am, riders will embark on the first 100 kilometers of their ride to Somerset.
Tonight, participants will camp at the Somerset Park Camp Ground, Esk-Kilcoy Rd, and rest up for the return journey the next day, with the majority of the riders expected to cross the finish line at UQ between 12 pm and 4 pm. Family, friends, and supporters are invited to greet and cheer on the riders as they make their way to the finish.
“I am really looking forward to today’s ride and I know my kids and grandkids are so proud of me. I know it is going to be tough but I am determined to get across that finishing line. It has been a personal journey for me to get here – but nothing compared to the fight my girlfriend had as she battled against cancer. I am here today riding in her memory,” said first time rider and grandmother Karen Moran.
The second annual Ride to Conquer Cancer benefiting QIMR is planned for August, 2012. To register for next year’s event phone 1300 117 433, or go online at www.conquercancer.org.au.
QIMR gratefully acknowledges event sponsors Rio Tinto, Sunsuper, Ausenco, Scody, Dibbs Barker, VWR, Excel, The Villager, Simon George & Sons, Channel Ten, and Triple M.